Secondhand smoke kills 600,000 worldwide annually
November 26th, 2010
09:08 AM ET

Secondhand smoke kills 600,000 worldwide annually

1 in 100 people around the world die from secondhand smoke each year, a new study reveals, and nearly two-thirds of the deaths occur in children.

Health officials have known that more than 1 billion people around the world smoke and 5 million people die each year from tobacco-related illness, according to the World Health Organization.  That's about one person dying every six seconds.

But just how many people are sickened by secondhand smoke has been less clear, which led researchers to try to investigate how big the problem is. Based on 2004 data gathered from 192 countries, researchers estimate "as many as 40 percent of children, 35 percent of women, and 33 percent of men are regularly exposed to secondhand smoke indoors," according to a WHO study published in the British medical journal The Lancet.

"Tobacco use is one of the biggest public health threats the world has ever faced," says the WHO.  More than 80 percent of the more than 1 billion smokers worldwide live in low- and middle-income countries, where the burden of tobacco-related illness and death is heaviest. The study authors estimate that 165,000 children under the age of 5 die each year from lower respiratory infections caused by second-hand smoke – and most of these deaths occur in Africa and south Asia.

Just two months ago, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention  released a report that found more than half of children in the United States, between ages 3 and 11 show signs in their blood of exposure to secondhand smoke.  Previous studies have found that even extremely low levels of exposure to cigarette smoke produced detectable abnormal genetic activity in these cells.

The more than 1 billion smokers are exposing billions of non-smokers to one of the top indoor pollutants according to the WHO. Researchers believe more needs to be done to create complete smoke-free indoor environments at work, in public places and on public transportation. Jonathan Samet and Heather Wipfli, two leading public health experts from the University of Southern California say their research from 31 countries found  that 88 percent of parents who smoked did so at home and that over 80 percent smoked near their children. In an accompanying commentary, they emphasize the need for smoke-free homes, which can help  lower the number of people sickened and dying from someone else's smoke.

Wipfli and Samet say educating and empowering women can make a big difference is protecting children and non-smoking adults from the deadly effects of secondhand smoke. "Few sources of indoor air pollution can be completely eliminated.   However, smoking indoors can be eliminated," they say.

soundoff (2,638 Responses)
  1. Bruce

    This is the biggest crock of crap I've read in a long time. 1 in 100 ??? You have to be kidding me !!

    Seriously, think of all the people know – former class mates in elementary, middle and high school. Classmates in college. Former co-workers, friends, family, teammates, etc... If I counted up all of these, the number is easily several thousand, yet I cannot name one non-smoker that I know that died from second-hand smoke.

    This is absolutely ridiculous, and is obviously sponsored by an antii-smoking campaign.

    November 26, 2010 at 09:52 | Report abuse | Reply
    • aginghippy

      Exactly. Commons sense should tell us that, were the warnings true, most of the baby boomers should know HUNDREDS of people who have dropped dead for no apparent reason, other than second hand smoke exposure. When I was a kid, in the 50's and 60's, everyone smoked everywhere: theaters, grocery stores, airplanes, work places, etc. Statistically speaking, millions of my generation should be dead as a result of second hand smoke. Nonsense!

      November 26, 2010 at 09:58 | Report abuse |
    • G

      @Bruce – Just because a study goes against your preconceived notions about what is true or not doesn't mean that it is false. If you are a smoker, then you have to recognize the fact that your unhealthy habit is a threat to the health and well-being of those around you. You ought to be ashamed for defending people who do so. No one deserves to die because someone else is enjoying himself.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:22 | Report abuse |
    • lord avie

      I have to agree with you. This is nothing but a campaign against people who smoke. Why don't these organsizations look at the real killer in the world. ALCOHOL. Why becausethe alchol lobby is so huge and will not let a study be done. A study done by the amrned forces showed of 143 deaths, a small number 9 were attributed to alcohol. When a complete sduty was done that number increased to 69. The reason, they put on death certificates, liver failure, kidney failure etc. Never did they put 'related to alcohol. Alchohol deaths are greatly unreported. Further the cost ot the economy, lost hours, people in jail, children and woman and men being abused, alchol related deaths from beatings car accidents etc. The time has come for these agencies so against smoking that they need to seriously do a report once and for all to show the real cost and death total from ALCOHOL.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:27 | Report abuse |
    • millie fink

      Spoken like a true smoker-in-denial, Bruce (whether you smoke or not).

      If someone dies from a disease brought on or exacerbated by second-hand smoke, it isn't necessarily clear that the smoke is what caused that to happen, even though it did.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:35 | Report abuse |
    • kidkoala

      If this is a campaign against smoking, what do they have to gain out of this exactly? The only thing they gain out of this is to get people to quit smoking and be healthier. I don't see what's so wrong with that.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:37 | Report abuse |
    • Andrew

      This is a crock, but these groups propaganda is worse than the tobacco companies and oil companies. If you did an honest study of how many people died from second hand smoke, the answer would be zero. I know people who believe any exposure to second hand smoke could irreparably harm them or their children, but yet will sit around a camp fire all night long, they've been trained to believe this crap. This propaganda is getting bad, this article even shows how foolish it is. It claims that children in the US "show signs in their blood of exposure to secondhand smoke" then it tries to tie that to another study that has nothing to do with the first ones. These studies should be fodder for statisticians. ANY STUDY THAT WOULD BE DEEMED PRO SMOKING WOULD HAVE THE SOURCE OF THE STUDY SCRUTINIZED. NOT THIS ONE. YOU CAN'T EVEN TELL WHICH STUDY THEY'RE TALKING ABOUT MOST OF THE TIME, THEY'RE TRYING TO PUSH AN AGENDA.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:40 | Report abuse |
    • millie fink

      Andrew, I was skeptical while reading your comment, UNTIL YOU UNLEASHED THE FURY!

      November 26, 2010 at 10:43 | Report abuse |
    • Laura

      Can you read?

      It says "more than 80%" of smokers live in different countries. They also stated that the "blood" of children tested in the U.S. shows exposure to second hand smoke. It also says children frequently die of respiratory illness brought on by secondhand smoke.

      How would you have any idea whether somone's death had a connection to secondhand smoke or not?

      FAIL on Reading Comprehension 101.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:48 | Report abuse |
    • Jeepers

      Oh my gosh. All you smokers going into your long diatribes about how "smoking ain't that bad." You are inhaling chemicals and carcinogens, which is fine if you want to do it to yourself. But if you're around other people, especially children...try to consider the possibility that maybe, just maybe it might be harmful to them. Try not to be such a bunch of selfish b@stards and think about someone besides yourselves for a change.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:10 | Report abuse |
    • Doug

      The opening sentence is just phrased a little awkwardly. It is not saying that every year 1% of the world's population dies of second-hand smoke. It means to say that every year, 1% of deaths worldwide are caused by lung cancer.

      So, unless you know hundreds of people who have died (and know the exact cause of death in each case), it is hard to know if this is accurate. Besides,the biggest cause of death for smoking (and second-hand smoke) is an increase in heart disease risk. You likely have known people that died of a heart attack, and had no idea what were the causes.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:13 | Report abuse |
    • Tim

      Worldwide Bruce. Do you know how many countries have basically no smoking laws at all. Big populace countries, emerging countries in the orient where cig smoking is basically like it was in the 50's here. Everybody does it and nobody knows the risks involved. The levels of secondhand smoke in the US isn't even something you can compare to the massive levels in other countries where they smoke in the shower. Everywhere. Secondhand smoke is at every low levels in the US because of years of research,law, and social courtesy. Thats not the same everywhere else bro.. People in those countries might as well be putting the cig in their mouth..they get that much secondhand smoke...

      November 26, 2010 at 11:22 | Report abuse |
    • yeayeayea

      Actually, for all of you non-smokers (of which I am one) who are preaching the good word to Bruce to put him in his place about the comment on the 1 in 100 statistic, the author of this article did not proof read his own material carefully enough. Yes, it says 1 in 100, however, instead of acting like a bunch of lemmings and just following anything you see rather than analyzing the matter, please also take a look at the actual number quoted: 600,000. Last time I checked, 600,000X100 = 60,000,000 which is not the world's population. The author meant to or should have written 1 in 10,000.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:25 | Report abuse |
    • James

      I'm a non-smoker. Never smoked. My father is a smoker. As a child (around 8), I was diagnosed with respiratory disease directly associated with exposure to tabocco smoke (my lungs look like a smokers, with tar, etc.). 30 years later and I'm still here. Now I have never smoked and I feel they have gone too far with this nonsense. Because of my diagnosis, when I die, they will say it was related to second hand smoke. I would agree that second hand smoke could be a contribuiting factor for respiratory problems. I do not believ it is killimng anyone. The stuff coming out of cars is worse and more plentiful.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:34 | Report abuse |
    • Chris

      Defiantly a lie...theres 300 million people in the US. Thad be close to like a 300th of the population. Dont even get my started on pollution in city's.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:37 | Report abuse |
    • Sagian

      Correct me if I'm wrong, but 600,000 people is NOT 1 in 100.

      It's 1 in 1,000.

      That's probably already been pointed out, but I would definitely question any other 'math' they might have used.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:43 | Report abuse |
    • whatnext

      yeayeayea is right. I didn't think the US was losing 3 million people a year to second hand smoke. But I'm not surprised to see that many of you were buying it. And that's not even counting the latest paranoia: third hand smoke. Although I only smoked myself from ages 12-17, I grew up with a smoking mom, and was a waiter for 15 years amongst smoking customers. How come I'm not dead? How come I never got sick?

      November 26, 2010 at 11:45 | Report abuse |
    • Sagian

      ...eh... I meant 1 in 10,000. *embarrassed*

      November 26, 2010 at 11:46 | Report abuse |
    • John Doe in denver

      Is second hand smoke any worse than inhaling exhaust fumes in jammed rush hour traffic? Or how about those that have emphysema, are hooked up to an oxygen tank because they can't breath, and smoke?

      I don't smoke but grew up with smoking parents. I suffer no ill effects. Although I choose not to be around smokers, they do have the right to inhale because the last time I checked it is a free country.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:57 | Report abuse |
    • whatnext

      This study say most of the kids under 5 who die from second hand smoke are from Africa and south Asia. Due to lack of medical care these kids are already more susceptible than normal; that should be taken into account.

      November 26, 2010 at 12:03 | Report abuse |
    • Ichorrid

      Millie Fink: Second hand smoke kills!
      Me: I'm counting on it.
      *Blows smoke in Millie Fink's face*

      November 26, 2010 at 12:09 | Report abuse |
    • bob

      So smoking is a good thing? Smoking kills.

      November 26, 2010 at 12:16 | Report abuse |
    • trainspot

      I agree with Bruce, G. To say this article isn't blown proposterously out of preportion is absurd. 1 out of 100 people die from second hand? Not even one in one hundred die from FIRSTHAND smoking in this world. Hell, of the thousands of people I've met through my life, I've only known two that have died from lung complications, and both were smokers. Not a single one a second hand smoker.

      Plus, what this article is clearly overshadowing is the blatant fact that the two most populated countries in the world are China and India, who also happen to be the two most polluted.
      See where I'm going with this?
      This article, and the idiots who wrote it, think that if someone has trouble breathing, it "somehow" must be because of a cigarette. Never mind the fact that the air in Dubai is so rancid you can practically taste the toxins (trust me, I know), they'll just gladly use another excuse to blame smoking.

      Yes, smoking's bad. We know. We've figured that out. But to take every lung ailment in the world and say "it was smokers", is just going to show how absolutely absurd this anti-smoking witchhunt has become.

      Now obviously some crazy anti-smoking fanatical is going to try to bash me for saying this, leaving a message equating me to a nazi or something. Go ahead. Whatever you write will just further prove how insane your "cause" is getting.

      November 26, 2010 at 12:20 | Report abuse |
    • jonathan

      typical smokers response in denial...

      November 26, 2010 at 12:20 | Report abuse |
    • Ichorrid

      smoke break.

      November 26, 2010 at 12:24 | Report abuse |
    • onmiwei

      If you read the article is said the majority was in Africa and Aisa. More than likely areas with less medical care for things like respritory infections or asthma attacks. I know as a child living with a heavy smoker I was sick until my dad quit smoking. Back in the day when they didn't think second hand smoke caused problems. A new doctor who was young told my parents about a study about second hand smoke. My dad quit that day and I have rarely been sick sense. If I hadn't had access to health care who knows what could have happened to me since I had pneumonia more times than I can count or even remember. The first time I had pneumonia I was 4 months old.

      Also my daughter has asthma. Second hand smoke has sent her into several asthma attacks where she needs to go to the ER. If a child or an adult can't get the medical attention they need when having a serve asthma attack death can occur that way as well. I have several cousins, other realtives and friends with asthma. It is possible for so many to die if you think of it more as countries with hardly any health care. Just because we have it good healthcare so that we don't die of pneumonia doesn't mean a lot of other countries don't.

      November 26, 2010 at 12:27 | Report abuse |
    • Burbank

      I agree and I don't even smoke myself. It's time to stop persecuting smokers with this ridiculous cr*p. The one that really gets me is that stupid comercial about how smoke can go through floorboards or light sockets into the next apartment and then showing a little boy coloring on a pristine upper middle class white carpet, rubbing his eye. If I were in an apartment that was so shoddy second hand smoke could come through the floor boards I would be a lot more worried about smoke from a crack pipe or the floor caving in! What an insult to anyone's intelligence that commercial is. Pure propaganda for the stupid.

      November 26, 2010 at 12:34 | Report abuse |
    • millie fink

      Is second hand smoke any worse than inhaling exhaust fumes in jammed rush hour traffic? Or how about those that have emphysema, are hooked up to an oxygen tank because they can't breath, and smoke?

      Wow, the March of False Equivalences started early in this thread!

      Yay! They're so hilarious, marching around like that in all their pumped-up pomposity!

      I don't smoke but grew up with smoking parents. I suffer no ill effects.

      And when I was a kid, I played Russian Roulette. And lo and behive, I'm still here! That's why I encourage my teenaged son to play Russian Roulette with his friends on rainy afternoons. Bobby's funeral was kind of sad, but yeah, I didn't die, and my son hasn't either, so like, it's all good, ya know?

      Although I choose not to be around smokers, they do have the right to inhale because the last time I checked it is a free country.

      So you're saying smokers should be free to impose the risk of death on me?

      I'm not saying they shouldn't have the right to inhale poison, but I am saying they shouldn't have the right to exhale it it into me.

      November 26, 2010 at 12:54 | Report abuse |
    • millie fink


      Millie Fink: Second hand smoke kills!
      Me: I'm counting on it.
      *Blows smoke in Millie Fink's face*

      Millie Fink: Has someone been dredging the bass pond again?

      (So many stinky bass turds in here . . .)

      November 26, 2010 at 12:59 | Report abuse |
    • evoc

      It is that one doesn't hear from the dead ones, so may not realize they have croaked. They, also, may not have been diagnosed as having 'second-hand smoke' related conditions.

      November 26, 2010 at 13:00 | Report abuse |
    • Brian

      Um...actually 1 in 100 is a big bunch of crap depending on what the study actually says. Assuming the world's population is 60 million as opposed to 6 billion. Hooray for Elementary Math!

      November 26, 2010 at 13:09 | Report abuse |
    • Ichorrid

      I say let them whine all they want about my habit.
      To think that an anti-smoking law could actually be enforced is absurd and is laughable at best.

      November 26, 2010 at 13:17 | Report abuse |
    • Rhea

      My aunt died of lung cancer. She never smoked, but her husband did for years.

      November 26, 2010 at 13:32 | Report abuse |
    • millie fink

      I say let them WHINE all they want about my habit.

      Way to infantalize those adults who object to the potential consequences of imposing your poisonous habit addiction on others.

      To think that an anti-smoking law could actually be enforced is absurd and is laughable at best.


      Okay, go ahead, light up in a bar or restaurant in a smoke-free city or state, and keep on sucking that poison after someone who works there reminds you that what you're doing is against the law. And then light up a second cancer stick when the red and blue lights start flashing through the window.

      Go ahead, see what happens. I dare ya.

      November 26, 2010 at 13:37 | Report abuse |
    • lynda

      I'm in total agreement with Bruce. I, too, was a child born in the 50's and there was absolutely nowhere you'd go that smoking wasn't permitted. Grocery stores, movie theaters, SCHOOL. Yes, I had elementary teachers who openly smoked in the classrooms. Not only am I and my four siblings ALL perfectly healthy but not one kid I went to school with had asthma, ADS, or was autistic.

      Perhaps what Big Brother is really afraid of is that tobacco is actually good for you! I know the American Indians valued tobacco for it's HEALTH BENEFITS. Imagine that................

      November 26, 2010 at 13:38 | Report abuse |
    • Jon T

      So, you have a lot of friends in Africa and south Asia? Try reading the article before making a fool of yourself.

      November 26, 2010 at 13:41 | Report abuse |
    • Rafael

      Bruce, the problem is not the study, the problem is CNN that doesn't know how to report a scientific result. The sentence should say: "1 in every 100 deaths per year are attributed to second hand smoke". Therefore, rather than counting the people you've know in life, you should count the number of people that you've known and seen die and once you count 100 deaths, about 1 of those should be due to second hand smoke according to the study. If the results of the study are completely accurate or not is another issue. But bad reporting from a major news agency can certainly transform minor things into huge controversies.

      November 26, 2010 at 13:42 | Report abuse |
    • Amy

      My mother died from bladder cancer at the age of 45. The number one cause of bladder cancer is smoking. She never did, but by father did.

      November 26, 2010 at 13:43 | Report abuse |
    • LeiLani

      My mother, a non-smoker and advocate of healthy living all of her life, died of lung cancer caused by breathing in the cigarette smoke exhaled by four of her co-workers surrounding her at her work place at a time when there were NO rules against smoking in the work place.

      Smokers have the right to smoke as much as they like, but they do NOT have the right to pollute the air others breathe. All smokers have to do is to respect the breathing rights of others is to swallow all of the smoke they create. Since smokers always say they love the smoke, it should be quite pleasurable for them to inhale and swallow all of their smoke.

      November 26, 2010 at 13:51 | Report abuse |
    • dan

      the point is, why should i have to deal with your smoke if im NOT a smoker.

      November 26, 2010 at 13:54 | Report abuse |
    • millie fink

      the point is, why should i have to deal with your smoke if im NOT a smoker.

      Cuz if you insist on not having to deal with it, then you're imposing on smokers' FREEDUMZZZ!!!

      So just shut and eat your Freedom Fries while they blow more smoke up yer nose.


      November 26, 2010 at 14:07 | Report abuse |
    • lynda

      the point, people, is that you're not going to be content until Big Brother totally bans smoking. What song are you all going to sing when Big Brother gets serious about telling you what you will, or wont, eat?

      This country is still a free country where people have the right to make their own choices. But I guarantee, if any one substance such as tobacco, is banned, Big Brother WILL feel empowered to make more choices for everyone.

      November 26, 2010 at 14:15 | Report abuse |
    • Ichorrid

      Millie, learn to read. When did I ever use the word, inside, in my last post?
      I prefer to smoke outside, but even that is not enough for some of you ill-informed crybabies.

      Like I said, banning the smoking of cigarettes is literally impossible. So have a coke and a smile, and kindly stfu.

      November 26, 2010 at 14:28 | Report abuse |
    • millie fink

      Ichabod, here's what you wrote–

      To think that an anti-smoking law could actually be enforced is absurd and is laughable at best.

      You didn't say anything there about smoking inside OR outside. Your comment describes the supposed non-enforceability of ANY anti-smoking law.

      In response to my demonstration of your bad logic, you've chosen a sniveling way to claim that you didn't write some bad logic, instead of owning up to your mistake.

      That's a bad look, dude.

      November 26, 2010 at 14:47 | Report abuse |
    • Drew Engman

      I find their statistics highly questionable. This sounds like politics or social engineering hiding as (extremely bad junk) science. It seems innocuous enough, but who really wants the government punishing us if we don't eat, drink, exercise, smoke, or any other thing as they impose on us without our vote, approval, or chance to express our opinion? The incremental adding of more and more restrictions on our freedoms is to be fought against, even if it's something we believe would be beneficial. I haven't smoked for 20 year, but it was my responsibility to choose to quit, not the 'nanny state.'

      November 26, 2010 at 15:51 | Report abuse |
    • epicure

      Smoking contributes to a wide range of serious diseases. Just because someone does not develop smoking-related lung cancer does not mean their disease (asthma and pulmonary diseases, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, numerous cancers of other sites than lung) has nothing to do with smoking. Second-hand smokers would have much higher risk of developing other diseases if they one or more additional risk factors. In those cases, second-hand smoking is still counted certain fraction of the cause.
      On the other hand, what would be the benefit of smoking or second-hand smoking? NONE.

      November 26, 2010 at 16:51 | Report abuse |
    • cliff

      87.3 percent of statistics are made up on the spot.
      Too bad these people didn't use the time and money for something constructive....like maybe providing more food and medical help for needy children!

      November 26, 2010 at 18:09 | Report abuse |
    • From Texas

      Couldnt have said it better my self this sounds like just more radical left wing propaganda. I find it interesting they dont bother to site there sources or go into any detail.

      November 26, 2010 at 18:10 | Report abuse |
    • collagekid

      i don't know of anyone who has died from secondhand smoke. where are these people?

      November 26, 2010 at 18:30 | Report abuse |
    • A. Nony

      CNN made a slip of a factor of 100. 1 in 100 (1.0%) of the world's population would be 60 million people dying of second-hand smoke per year. 600,000 people dying of second-hand smoke per year is 1/100 of one percent (0.01%) or the world's population.

      November 26, 2010 at 21:20 | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      Well – a little fear mongering never hurt

      November 26, 2010 at 21:26 | Report abuse |
    • A. Nony

      It is interesting how few of the commenters did the math (i.e. 600,000 is 1/100 of 1% of the world's population.) Many commenters knew intuitively (and correctly) that 1/100 of the world's population was absurd. Many others twisted logic into a pretzel trying to justify the 1/100 number. Is it possible that something like 1/100 of 1% of the world's population dies each year because of an inability to do simple arithmetic? Personally, I think smoking is idiotic. But I also think the obsession many people have with imposing healthy behavior on total strangers is sick. And, although I have not done the numbers, I would not be surprised to find that the social costs of unhealthy behaviors are overstated - for policy reasons.

      November 26, 2010 at 21:32 | Report abuse |
    • Commojoe

      I have to agree, Bruce; this is just another jab at personal freedom and use of a LEGAL product that the anti-smoking nazis doen't like. That, plus these days, there are such seperated smoking areas that it's rare for much smoke to get near someone who doesn't want to be around it. These poor whiners are simply going to have to deal with the fact that some people will always smoke, whether they like it or not.

      November 27, 2010 at 02:55 | Report abuse |
    • Irish

      I totally agree! All this crap about second-hand smoke is only another ploy by the anti-smoking crowd. What about all the years that we burned coal for heat? I can remember when the smoke was so bad on my walk to school that it choked you! Nobody said a word about that and nobody got cancer from it, only smoke in your eyes. They have blamed everything from eggs to smoke for cancer. How about some truth for a change? They want our rights to fit their own wishes, plain and simple.

      November 27, 2010 at 10:51 | Report abuse |
    • RT

      Wow! As a respiratory therapist I got to say it is good to see all of you smokers on here. Please continue to smoke so I can take care of you in the hospital when you end up on a ventilator from you smoking enduced copd exacerbation. All of you smokers are job security for me. You may not be the smartest bunch but I still appreciate you.

      November 27, 2010 at 11:19 | Report abuse |
    • PJ

      Wow, you must be a smoker. Unwilling to see that your ignorant choices are hurting others. You my friend are weakminded and foolish. The American Cancer Society has conducted a large amount of research in this area and second hand smoke certainly does harm your lungs and contributes to long-term health issues. You should feel ashamed of yourself.

      November 27, 2010 at 12:25 | Report abuse |
    • Joan in NC

      Your whole life? You have known thousands in your whole life that have died from smoking? Or did you mean you have known thousands of people throughout your life? Maybe I need a nap.....:)

      November 27, 2010 at 14:16 | Report abuse |
    • Marcus

      "This is absolutely ridiculous, and is obviously sponsored by an antii-smoking campaign"
      Who cares who its sponsored by. The facts are smoking kills people, if this is meant to scare people so what. Smoking does nothing good for society, so there is no pro to smoking only cons.

      November 27, 2010 at 19:46 | Report abuse |
    • danny g

      Reason I believe this is complete bunkum? They only say "secondhand smoke" and "smoke related illnesses," but never do they specifically single out cigarettes.

      Maybe some of you fat white middle class Democrats defending this study haven't realized this, but most of the world, and most of those poor countries in this study, routinely use open fires for heat, cooking, malaria prevention (keeps mosquitoes away)...and in most of these nations the populace isn't educated enough to know that, for instance, you shouldn't burn treated wood as it will release awful amounts of awful chemicals.

      If these studies mean lots of kids are dying because they're breathing *any* for of smoke, I'll believe it. To say all of these deaths are related to cigarettes and cigarettes alone? Bunkum.

      November 27, 2010 at 22:12 | Report abuse |
    • smoker

      The article stated that most of these second hand smoke deaths are in Africa in Asia.

      November 28, 2010 at 12:26 | Report abuse |
    • Marc

      I don't know if the study is true or not, but the "think of everyone you know" arugment is a poor one. The study was worldwide, not just the US. Since many countries have much less strict rules mores about smoking in public, deaths from secondhand smoke are likely to be much higher than here.

      November 28, 2010 at 13:35 | Report abuse |
    • John

      Yes Bruce, you and people like you are a crock of crap with you immature mind and stupidity.

      November 28, 2010 at 14:59 | Report abuse |
    • goggomobil

      Why hasn't smoking been linked to global warming?

      Recently, I had to stifle a guffaw when a parent with a child complained someone smoking near them. The father had his boy standing next to a running coal-fired locomotive. There is no catalytic converter on a 1920s locomotive. We were all breathing the smoke from that thing. The car he drove there (and mine) undoubtedly filled our air with deadly fumes, a thousand-fold of what one smoker yields.

      Why aren't we stomping on people who drink alcohol? Second-hand inebriation kills thousands of innocent motorists alone. It killed thousands of oil-coated birds in Valdez, Alaska. Not an foggy-iffy-maybe link to death like second-hand smoke... but second-hand inebriation is a link that involves crushed bones and splattered brains... medical evidence that cannot be denied.

      Lemmings and hypocrites, all of us.

      November 28, 2010 at 20:02 | Report abuse |
    • fathomless

      I have known far more people die of being fat.

      November 29, 2010 at 14:43 | Report abuse |
    • John

      Obviously you smoke.

      December 9, 2010 at 17:04 | Report abuse |
  2. aginghippy

    Let me make sure I have this right. The "researchers" are completely sure that the deaths of these 600,000 people are caused by second hand smoke exposure, and not ANY OTHER pollutant, indoors or out, or ANY OTHER possible cause? I think someone is blowing smoke up our a$$es.

    November 26, 2010 at 09:53 | Report abuse | Reply
    • roots

      Why is that hard to believe? Basically for every 100 people that die, 1 is related to second hand smoke. Maybe it's heart disease, cancer, pneumonia, etc. Do you really expect a doctor to go up to a family and say "I'm sorry for your loss and the signs are there that your family member was a victim of second hand smoke exposure."

      No doctor will say that for good reason. I don't think that number is hard to believe. Love the anti-smoking lobbying conspiracy theories and even funnier that anti-smoking campaign is used in your comment in a negative fashion!

      November 26, 2010 at 10:04 | Report abuse |
    • Anonymous Alcoholic

      Even though this article is a complete load of crap, I do agree with the whole anti-smoking movement. The reason I do is simply because, why smoke cigarettes? It doesn't do anything positive for you. Smoke weed. It gets you high. Drink alcohol, its get you drunk. Screw it, sniff some coke or eat some shrooms for all I care. At least they have some kind of positive effects although with negative consequences. Cigarettes just have negative consequences and that's it. I just don't see the point in smoking cigarettes besides looking cool while you're young and then regretting the decision when you're older.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:09 | Report abuse |
    • Doug

      For any given death, the researchers can't know the cause. However, they can look at population statistics, comparing people who were and were not exposed to second-hand smoke. On a population level, you would expect that things like exposure to pollutants would average out (unless you have some reason to think that second-hand smokers are likely exposed to more of other pollutants).

      Put differently, people exposed to second-hand smoke do not live as long. That is a fact; the only question is the reason. This could be causation (second-hand smoke kills) or correlation (for example, people exposed to second-hand smoke tend to be poorer, and thus do not live as long). Researchers have tried to account for every correlative confounding factor they can think of, and still it is clear that second-hand smokers die earlier. Therefore, it seems likely that second-hand smoking kills people.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:21 | Report abuse |
    • aginghippy

      @ Doug, You say, "For any given death, the researchers can't know the cause." Yet, the article seems to be telling us that the researchers KNOW exactly how many people die from second hand smoke.
      You go on to say, "Put differently, people exposed to second-hand smoke do not live as long. That is a fact;" So, ALL people exposed to second hand smoke have decreased life expectancy? Really?
      You end with, "Therefore, it seems likely that second-hand smoking kills people." I think it is likely that a few people die from second hand smoking. However, I think it is a stretch to conclude that the numbers are anywhere near those presented in this article.
      No matter how many times I engage in a debate on this subject, I never get an answer to the simple question: Of the dozens of my peers who were exposed to second hand smoke every day of their lives all through childhood and for 20 years thereafter, why do I not know of a single NONSMOKER who has died of a smoking related illness?
      We smokers, for the most part, accept that we need to refrain from smoking in indoor public places. But the smoke nazis are never satisfied. They want us to move 100 yards away from any entrance. And they won't be satisfied until smoking is outlawed completely. And BS "studies" like this fuel the fire of their self-righteous indignation.

      November 26, 2010 at 12:22 | Report abuse |
    • jonathan

      they do their research in a lab on cells of said subjects...the probebial smoke of the asxx is far better than that which enters the bloodstream via lungs

      November 26, 2010 at 12:22 | Report abuse |
    • Doug

      aginghippy: Of course they don't know exactly how many people die from second hand smoke. And of course not everyone around second hand smoke will have a shorter life. Both are straw man arguments. The point is that people who are around second hand smoke live shorter lives on average. Based on the shorter life span, it is possible to come up with a reasonable estimate of the number of deaths. Of course 600,000 is not an exact number. It may actually been 700,000 or 500,000. But I don't see how the major point of the article changes if "only" 500,000 die from second hand smoke.

      And your argument that you don't know anyone who died of second hand smoke has two flaws. First, the actual research article says that 1 out of every 100 deaths is caused by second hand smoke (I realize that CNN mangled this statement in the opening line). Do you really know 100 people who died for whom you know the exact cause of death? Second, the most common way for smoking to kill is through heart disease. Do you really know no second-hand smokers that died of heart disease? Again, the hard thing is that on a case-by-case basis, it is impossible to be certain whether a given death was cause by smoking (or second-hand smoke). But, second hand smokers on average have shorter life expectancies, higher rates of cancer and higher rates of heart disease than people who have had limited exposure to second hand smoke. None of your arguments change that fact.

      November 26, 2010 at 14:10 | Report abuse |
    • Doug

      I should add that smokers (and second-hand smokers) have higher rates of lung cancer, bladder cancer, pancreatic cancer, cancer of kidneys, esophagus cancer and cervical cancer. So, the only way that you could be certain that you do not know anyone who died of second hand smoke is if you know no one who died of heart disease or any of these cancers.

      November 26, 2010 at 14:14 | Report abuse |
    • epicure


      Well, you say you don't know of any one second-hand smoker who died of smoking-related disease. How many smoking-related diseases are you counting? Because it's not just lung cancer and pulmonary disease that are almost entirely due to smoking. Smoking increases the risk of almost every other disease when that person is also exposed to other risk factors. For example, women who are exposed to hormone therapy AND smoking, their risk of breast cancer goes up by 20% or more, depending on the intensity and duration of smoke exposure. So, out of all death counts due to breast cancer, when you estimate the contributing RISK FACTORS, smoking and second-hand smoking DO get counted a fraction those death.

      And, the list of diseases that are affected by smoking is endless.

      November 26, 2010 at 17:23 | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      That is correct – they are experts

      November 26, 2010 at 21:27 | Report abuse |
  3. hardworking

    I agree with aginghippy. I guess they also went out and tested all the kids in the us for second hand smoke. Couldn't be all the pollutants or artificial flavors, preservatives, etc. we put in our foods. Couldn't be all the genetically engineered foods we eat now. Besides even if it is true there are way to many people on the planet so who cares. The planet needs 85% of us to die anyway.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:07 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mike

      Let me get this straight. Food additives which have been researched enough to be felt safe to consume are harmful and will kill you, but cigarette smoke which has been researched equally, if not more, extensively does no harm. If they find pesticides hurt people, they make them illegal to use, but cigarettes are KNOW to cause heart attacks, strokes, cancer (lung, throat, pancreas, colon to name a few) and we still doubt their harm. Show me one smoker who quit and wanted to go back to smoking. One. Every single one of them want to quit because they know it is ruining their life. Many are just too defiant to admit it. Stop being afraid of the things the media and popular culture tell you are bad for you but have no science. I suppose you think that vaccines cause autism, artificial sweetners are deadly, meat contains toxins that poison your body, and that the H1N1 flu vaccine will do more harm than good. Wake up and get your head out of the smog-infested cloud where you live.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:12 | Report abuse |

      The math says that with 1.3% population growth in the world today that in roughly 720 years there will beone person per square meter of land. Thank you smokers for keeping the growth rate down.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:25 | Report abuse |
    • aginghippy

      @Mike, We have known many products introduced to the market, and deemed "safe" by the "experts", which have later been found to cause illness and death. It's amusing that you implicitly trust anyone who tells you something is safe, and trust even more anyone who issues another warning about cigarette smoke. I am thoroughly convinced that a new study could be published in which we are told that second hand smoke causes acne in our pets, and people would believe it, no questions asked. HA HA!

      November 26, 2010 at 12:29 | Report abuse |
    • epicure


      It is sad that the public do not have the basic trust in science.
      It's not just one research group that reports the risk of smoking and second-hand smoking. If you work on public health data day in and day out, you would know how smoking overwhelmingly topples all the other contributors of disease risk. Air pollution, food additives.... if you were to make a graph of all the risk factors of diseases, you cannot put smoking with these other factors together in one graph – because the contribution of smoking so much greater than all the others' summed up.

      November 26, 2010 at 17:29 | Report abuse |
  4. doughnuts

    Likely they are using the same methodology for the 400,000 people each year are killed by smoking. Meaning that if a 112-year old woman dies of a heart-attack, and she smoked until she was 60, then it is a "smoking-related" death.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:10 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Doug

      Given that 28% of the deaths were in children, obviously it wasn't all 100 year old women. The actual research article address this issue. It says that 600,000 deaths are caused every year, and that these result in about 10 million lost years of life. So, the average person killed by second-hand smoke died about 15 years earlier than they otherwise would have died.

      (Note that this is not saying that second-hand smoke takes an average of 15 years off people's lives. Many second-hand smokers suffer no significant effects. However, for those that do die, they lose an average of 15 years.)

      November 26, 2010 at 11:41 | Report abuse |
  5. gjdagis

    What a blatant lie; they will stop at nothing to force their will on other people. I don't smoke but I laugh at the suggestion that the little bit of smoke that emanates from the end of a cigarette will do any harm at all. Why don't they concentrate on the wood stoves which REALLY cause serious health concerns?

    November 26, 2010 at 10:12 | Report abuse | Reply
    • muhrvis

      Hilarious. Do you even realize what is IN cigarette smoke?

      November 26, 2010 at 12:27 | Report abuse |
  6. Phil

    Smoking is stupid, period. Why are human beings so self destructive? Oh wait, because we're stupid.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:12 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Jason

      Forgive our stupidity oh genius, immortal one. Some of we lesser minds figured we'd die anyway and took it as a trade off for the immense satisfaction it can add to our day. Now I realize that the "Phil" has deemed me stupid. The only thing is I DON"T GIVE A DAMN WHAT YOU THINK! I've been a smoker and a non-smoker so I speak from experience. How about you genius?

      November 26, 2010 at 11:35 | Report abuse |
    • lynda

      amen! Let's waste some more of the taxpayers money and have a 'scientific study' to see how many will drop dead from consuming Happy Meals.

      So far as I'm concerned, not one person on this planet is going to get off of it alive, so leave the smokers be. There's going to be a bigger threat of dying of starvation if something isn't done about the world population anyway.

      November 26, 2010 at 13:54 | Report abuse |
  7. Brian K

    Well I agree with other comments that this article is basically bogus. I must say that I HATE breathing smoke from others and I should never have to breathe someones second hand smoke EVER.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. PJ

    Smokers have NO rights. If their vomit smelling smoke invades my space they are are infringing on my health. I wonder if smokers realize how they stick. Just standing in line near a smoker makes me gag, their clothing, breath....eeeew. And then there are the idiots that smoke in their cars but hold the butt outside the window so the smoke wafts in other's cars. Pigs.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:17 | Report abuse | Reply
    • PJ

      sorry that would be STINK not stick

      November 26, 2010 at 10:18 | Report abuse |
    • srhx1605

      Well, lets see here....using your logic...People who drive cars have no rights!!! All the emissions being spit out into the air. I guarantee you they are much more toxic than cigarette smoke. Every time you start your car, you are infringing on the good health of everyone in the worlds population. Go spew your rhetoric to someone who cares.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:25 | Report abuse |

      Your right ! I rather breath exhaust fumes instead of those nasty cigs.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:30 | Report abuse |
    • Furnatic

      I have a Great idea! How about you ASK THE SMOKERS TO MOVE? Most of us have the decency to either do that or put out the cigarette. Christ, if I walk into one more bar, smoking bar of all places and a non-smoker obnoxiously coughs rather than ask me to move due to the smoke, I'm going to jam my pack into his windpipe so he's really coughing.

      November 26, 2010 at 14:04 | Report abuse |
    • Seabass1

      I agree PJ , when we are in the same room , breathing the same clean air then they light a gigarette , whose rights are being violated ? Why do I have to breath in their exaust ? It is my right , which I share with the smoker to clean air , it is they who violate it .

      November 26, 2010 at 16:48 | Report abuse |
    • Lioness

      I agree with you, PJ. Smokers smell disgusting when they've recently been smoking and then come stand next to you. That is called "third-hand smoke," and it is a known health-hazard, as well. We shouldn't have to ask them to smoke far, far away from us, but people are overall pretty selfish.

      November 29, 2010 at 09:37 | Report abuse |
  9. wateverpothead

    can we get actual information of how the study was conducted or does cnn just like to make speculative headlines?

    November 26, 2010 at 10:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. MrMIke

    @hardworking I agree with you 100%. The planet is OVERPOPULATED!! At this rate of procreation there will be 20billion people in just 80 years!!!! The Earth can not sustain that population!!! So WHO CARES HOW MANY PEOPLE DIE FROM SECONDHAND SMOKE!!!

    November 26, 2010 at 10:20 | Report abuse | Reply
    • John

      When it's your kid you'll care. You're an A$$

      I personally have had both parents get cancer, one 100% from smoking and the other from what we don't know. Could it be 2nd hand smoke, maybe, maybe not. Either way smoking causes cancer and it's conceivable that breathing second hand smoke increases your chance of getting cancer also.

      I get the over population argument...but in this case it's not darwinism it's selfish people smoking near innocent people who might be smarter but are there because they have no choice!

      November 26, 2010 at 11:22 | Report abuse |
  11. heliocracy

    Definitely a load of crap. Here's another way to know: The average life span in the U.S. is about 78 years. In 2004, a 50-year study determined that smoking cuts about 10 years off your expected life span. So let's assume that you start smoking at about 18 years old; on average, you can directly smoke cigarettes for about 50 years without dying, right? Now, let's assume that breathing second-hand smoke is half as dangerous as actually smoking (which is wildly exaggerated)...in that case you could breath second hand smoke for 100 years before it killed you. But the average life span is 78 years–in other words, you simply can't live long enough to have second-hand smoke kill you. It's simple common sense.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:23 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mylu

      I agree and the goverment is just covering up what they put in our food thats what killing us. Plus my husband is a mechanic and he says diesel fumes is worst then cigerette smoke.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:38 | Report abuse |
    • millie fink

      Wow heliocracy, that's really dumb!

      You clearly haven't put any real thought into what statistics really mean.

      Think: AVERAGES

      November 26, 2010 at 10:41 | Report abuse |
    • kidkoala

      Sorry, but life spans don't work like that. You are using generalized numbers to determine how long people will live. I personally know someone who died from smoking since he was 16, and died of a heart attack at the age of 45. Everyone is different, and using general statistics tells you nothing of how healthy or unhealthy smoking and second-hand smoke can be. To come to the conclusion that you can breathe in second-hand smoke and breathe it in until you are 100 is ludicrous.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:44 | Report abuse |
    • Doug

      This is a beautiful example of what happens when a really dim person tries to make a scientific argument. When people say that smoking takes an average of 10 years off people's lives, that doesn't mean that every smoker lives exactly 10 years off every smokers lives. Smoking increases your risk of cancer and heart disease, both of which can take 40 or more years off of a person's life. Second-hand smoke is likely similar – it increases your risk of cancer and other smoking related illnesses, but not by quite as much. So, many second-hand smokers will have no negative repercussions, while some will have dramatically shorter lifespan.

      (By analogy, if not wearing your seat belt shortens your lifespan by three years, your logic would argue that: "That means it takes 75 years for someone's lack of seat-belting to kill them. Since I drive half as much as most people, not wearing a seat belt will take 150 years to kill me. Since there is no way I'll live to 150, I don't need to wear a seat belt.")

      But thanks for your post – I am always looking for good examples to show my students of how poorly most people understand statistics 🙂

      November 26, 2010 at 11:07 | Report abuse |
    • heliocracy

      I'm merely pointing out that a person can directly smoke cigarettes for 50-60 years before it kills them. I am thinking of averages, and only averages. You can't say that because you personally know someone who died from smoking after 30 years means that there's no such thing as an average life span for a smoker. If the AVERAGE person can smoke 50 years and not die from it, then the AVERAGE person who breathes second hand smoke will not die from it before his normal AVERAGE life span has passed. The fact is that smoking researchers blame many causes of death on smoking simply because the person smoked. There's absolutely no control to that experiment.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:18 | Report abuse |
    • heliocracy

      Oh and by the way, Doug, because smoking CAN take 40 years off your life doesn't mean that on average, it does take 40 years off your life. You can't deny the existence of averages because of outlyers.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:26 | Report abuse |
    • Doug

      Again "heliocracy", averages have no meaning in this argument. Smoking kills some people in 5 years, and never kills others. If you double that number (assuming that second-hand smoke is half as dangerous), second-hand smoke will kill some people in 10 years and others never.

      Basically, both smoking and second-hand smoking are like Russian roulette. Many people will suffer no bad consequences, and a few will suffer huge consequences. If you play Russian roulette with two bullets in a 6-chamber gun, it doesn't have any meaning to say that it will on average reduce your lifespan by one-third. Either it will immediately end your life, or you will be fine. Second-hand smoking reduces the number of bullets in the chamber; it does not eliminate the risk.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:36 | Report abuse |
    • James

      2 things. 1, that average lifespan already factors in smoking. It's for everyone, not just non-smokers. 2, if smoking cuts your life by 10 years and second hand smoke is half as bad, then second hand smoke would cut half the number of years smoking does. Meaning that second hand smoke would only cut your life by 5 years.
      Now, using your 'logic' that smoking would kill you at age 68, which is 10 years short of the 78 average, then second hand smoke would kill you at age 73. That's five years short of the 78 average. and only half of the 10 years for smoking.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:52 | Report abuse |
    • heliocracy

      James, if smoking kills the average smoker in 50 years, and second-hand smoke is half as bad (it's not), then the average person can live through 100 years of second-hand smoke inhalation. If second-hand smoke were really so dangerous, then primary smoking would be producing far, far more premature deaths than it does.

      Doug's point is well taken, that the averages cannot be applied to individuals. In that sense, statistics are completely meaningless. However, it is useful (and common) to measure an effect of this type by determining what the average result is. I believe you got the impression I was claiming that statistics deny the idea that a smoker can be killed in a short time by smoking, or second-hand smoking. That is not at all what I'm saying. I'm merely pointing out that if so many people are being killed by second-hand smoke, then primary smoking would kill many more people than it does...on average. There must be a problem in this study with tying causes of death to second-hand smoke when there's no good evidence that the smoke had a determining effect.

      November 26, 2010 at 12:19 | Report abuse |
    • James

      Smoking doesn't kill a person in 50 years. Life kills a person in 60 years (18+60=78). Smoking only takes 10 years off that (that's where your 50 years comes from), then second hand smoke only takes 5 years off (killing in 55 years).

      November 26, 2010 at 12:27 | Report abuse |
    • muhrvis

      Mathematically and statistically challenged... The loss of years is an AVERAGE, not a number of years cut off the end of someone's life... Duuuuuuuuuh.

      November 26, 2010 at 12:30 | Report abuse |
    • heliocracy

      I was talking about averages. Why would I use anything other than the average number of years cut off from the end of the average life (In case you haven't noticed, time is unidirectional..it's impossible to cut out time at the beginning)? Would it weaken my argument if I cited 20 years instead of the true average of 10? Duh.

      November 26, 2010 at 13:43 | Report abuse |
  12. cabo wabo

    the hippie guy is right. i was exposed to second hand smoke my entire childhood, and so were the kids i grew up with. i never even contrected bronchitis and im 50 yrs old now. the kids i knew who have died did so from mainly from alcohol related incidents or violence. and yes, smokers pretty much have to smoke at home cuz theres no place else to smoke at. i like to smoke but i do so in my cold garage with the door cracked. i do wish cigs werent invented, but government makes alot of cash off them. its a catch 22. smokers pay more taxes into the system, but we arent allowed to smoke anywhere but home. we are a financially needed group but are considered a really nasty bunch for our habit and arent allowed in public. well stop selling cigs so us losers can live longer as well as those around us. and tax the crap out of some other group to make up for lost govt income.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:25 | Report abuse | Reply
    • i

      My parents smoked only for a few years when I was young. I've had respiratory problems most of my life, including bronchitis. All of my parents' generation that got cancer (several) were smokers; none of the non smokers got cancer (my father did, in his early 60's, must not take much for some people). I have an immediate allergic reaction to cigarette smoke, and couldn't even eat in most restaurants until they eliminated smoking in them. I've had to endure this with no recourse because as a group, smokers are self centered people that don't care, or don't believe, the distress they cause other people. Whether it's for a good reason or not, I have absolutely no sympathy for any inconvenience or cost the government imposes on smokers; they obviously have felt the same about me and every other non smoker.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:46 | Report abuse |

      You must stop to wonder why cigs are not illegal. 9/11 3,000 die at the hands of terrorists. We went to war with two countries. Yet if the tobacco industry kills 200 x as many every single year why don't we line up the ceo's of the tobacco industry and shoot them? Just a thought..............could it be that tobacco contributes a trillion dollars into the world economy?
      Imagine the employment created just in the health care industry to treat the sick. We're talking about some high paying jobs that can't be out sourced.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:42 | Report abuse |
  13. isadore

    Guess what? We are all going to die of something one day. All you hear is how this will kill you, and that will kill you. What kind of fear based society are we creating? Just live a good life, be considerate of others (i do smoke. i NEVER smoke around my children, in the house, car, or non smokers, and I never throw the butts on the ground. ) Knock off the judging of others for none of us are perfect, and have some fun.
    Peace be with you.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:25 | Report abuse | Reply
    • BellaTerra66

      Same with me. I smoke but am most considerate. And I agree with everything else you write. Peace be with you, too.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:34 | Report abuse |
    • millie fink

      Isadore, i'd be less likely to judge you if you didn't stink so much.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:37 | Report abuse |
    • Meggie

      millie fink
      Your self righteous comment leads me to believe you are a very ugly person. You are probably so obese that your fat rolls smell like road kill. I would be less likely to Judge you if your ignorance wasn't so astounding.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:56 | Report abuse |
    • millie fink


      It's self-righteous and ignorant to remind smokers that non-smokers notice how much they stink?

      I'm just trying to help them out with their impaired social skills; it's a public service!

      November 26, 2010 at 11:07 | Report abuse |
  14. i

    Note that the article says worldwide. Every other country I've been in obviously has a much higher percentage of smokers than the U.S., so this article might not even need to count the U.S. But even in the U.S., smokers have a bigger impact than their numbers might suggest. How many commercial buildings, even churches, have a few smokers standing right next to the entry doors? Lots, and if it's a sheltered vestibule type entry, the smoke can get really heavy, enough that my wife would notice the smell when I got home, just from a few seconds exposure. They don't even have to stay next to the door; if you're downwind, you can easily smell it a hundred feet away. I don't know what level of exposure is necessary for medical problems, but if it isn't much, this article could be accurate. I suspect most smokers won't agree with this; I've known smokers that believed rolling down the car window while smoking would keep their reeking cars odor free, so a suspension of reality seems to be a common symptom of smoking.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:33 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. J

    This is just like religion. Stop picking and choosing to satisfy your own private agendas! The deaths of these people "could" be related to second hand smoke, but it also "could" be related to an infinite number of other issues from bad genetics, to disease, to other pollutants... you just choose to zoom in on smoking – for obvious reasons.

    Granted I'm not endorsing smoking here, it's obviously bad for you, but still.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. isadore

    millie fink~
    Judge me all you want. It has no effect on my life what so ever. Judging others only depletes your energy...

    November 26, 2010 at 10:44 | Report abuse | Reply
    • millie fink

      Isadore, I'm not judging you. I'm just describing what happens when I get around smokers. My olfactory organ works better than theirs does; they rarely realize how much they stink to non-smokers.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:46 | Report abuse |
  17. Garry

    The report is flawed. There are several reasons that the people died from lung cancer. Where did they live? What was the family history? etc... Beside, how can you get lung cancer from second-hand smoke? Were they put in a small box with the smoker and have to breath that air for 24/7? Doesn't a smoker absorb most of the harmful elemnts of a cigarette? And doesn't the smoke disipate into the air by the law of dispersion. Smoke goes out one foot from the source, it will disperse in a one foot by one foot area. If it goes two feet, it desperses into a two foot by two foot areas, etc. So if someone breaths in the air of a smoker, unless the are right on top of them, they are getting a very small fraction of the smoke. So these studies of second-hand smoke are worthless.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. gregdn

    I'm a nonsmoker but think these 'studies' are designed purely to help people sue tobacco firms. There are way too many variables in life to accurately assess thiis.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. Dr Cooper

    6 billion divided by 100 is 60 million not 600,000. I wouldn't want a script from a physician that can't be bothered to use a pocket calculator before posting a blog entry read by millions.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:45 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Doug

      The opening sentence is just phrased awkwardly. It means to say that every year, 1% of deaths world-wide are attributable to second-hand smoke, not that 1% of the world's population every year dies of second-hand smoke.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:50 | Report abuse |
    • Dr Cooper

      That makes more sense, and 5 seconds with a pocket calculator would have revealed the ambiguity in the semantics.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:55 | Report abuse |

      OH ! the math again......Dr.Cooper your expectation are to high......LOL

      November 26, 2010 at 12:57 | Report abuse |
    • Dr. Bob

      Actually, the first part of this article doesn't state "Of all the many, many deaths every year, 1 in 100 are caused by second hand smoke". In fact, it states (and I'm quoting): "1 in 100 people around the world die from secondhand smoke each year, a new study reveals, and nearly two-thirds of the deaths occur in children". It SPECIFICALLY states that second hand smoke kills one out of every 100 people.

      Now, for those of you that APPEAR to have more intelligence than the rest of us, you might infer from the actual statement that what they REALLY mean is that one out of every 100 deaths is caused by second hand smoke. However, you're simply giving the statement undue meaning to not only make the statement itself sound more plausible, but to make this entire "study" seem less like the pile of elephant dung that it really is.

      Either way, as far as I know, there is NO test that can definitively prove whether someone's death is caused from second hand smoke. It has become almost second nature in this country to assume that anyone dying of cardiovascular disease, respiratory failure, etc, that had any contact with a smoker HAD to have contracted their disease from the inhalation of second hand cigarette smoke.

      Second hand smoke has become the "Carpal Tunnel Syndrome" of the new century. During the 90's, every time someone would have an issue with their wrists, hands, and/or fingers, they automatically had Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (those pesky keyboards were going to kill us all). Now, every time someone gets asthma, it's automatically believed to have been caused by second hand smoke.

      For the record, I'm a non-smoker, but I include second hand smoke among the other, unproven "facts" that are designed to maintain our fear based society. along with global warming, the constant threat of a terrorist attack, and ADD.

      November 26, 2010 at 14:33 | Report abuse |
    • Doug

      Dr. Bob: I am not inferring anything. The first sentence seemed questionable, so I went and looked up the original Lancet research paper on which this article is based. The original paper is very clear in saying that second hand smoke causes 1% of all deaths worldwide.

      This sort of mistake is very common – in trying to summarize a complicated article, CNN often mangles some of the details, making the science look bad.

      November 26, 2010 at 16:00 | Report abuse |
    • Doug

      Dr. Bob: As for your more fundamental argument (that people "assume that anyone dying of cardiovascular disease, respiratory failure, etc, that had any contact with a smoker HAD to have contracted their disease from the inhalation of second hand cigarette smoke") – that is a total straw man argument. Some people may feel that way, but that obviously isn't the basis for this study. If it was, much more than 1% of deaths would have been attributed to second-hand smoke.

      Equally weak is the argument that we can't be certain for any given death whether second-hand smoke caused it. Of course that is true. However, we can see that people exposed to second hand smoke live shorter lives, have higher rates of heart and lung disease, etc. This is true even when you account for income levels, location, etc. Therefore, even though we can't be certain for any single death whether smoking caused it, it is clear that second hand smoke causes many deaths, and it is possible to look at population stats and come up with a reasonable estimate for how many.

      By your argument, we have no way of knowing whether seat belts save lives, because some people die in car crashes even though they are wearing a seat belt. Therefore, for every car accident death where the person was not wearing a seat belt, we can not be certain whether the lack of seat belt killed them (or put differently, whether a seat belt would have saved their life). However, by looking at population statistics, we can see that wearing a seat belt increases your chances of survival. The same thing is true for smoking.

      November 26, 2010 at 16:09 | Report abuse |
  20. cp125

    I'm a non-smoker and have never smoked, but I find this research suspect, probably from a group with a anti-smoking agenda. These groups should spend their time and most importantly their money in a more meaningful way instead of this waste.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:45 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Andrew

    THEY'RE MAKING PEOPLE AFRAID TO SPEAK THE TRUTH. You can't be that big of fools, a doctor can never say that second hand smoke causes anybody's death let alone 600,000 people. How are they allowed to say that. There is not even reliable evidence that anybody has ever died of second hand smoke. There is just not evidence supporting that. Doctors and scientists have no conclusive data that second hand smoke has ever killed a person.But they're allowed to say that, that's what society does when they want something to stop.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:46 | Report abuse | Reply
    • kidkoala

      Andrew, what do the doctors have to gain from saying that smoking is unhealthy for you and for those around you? If smoking is harmful, they can keep their mouths shut and wait for people to have more health problems. More health problems = more money and business for them. So I do not see your reasoning.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:49 | Report abuse |
    • Kamenl

      Andrew, your statements are moronic. Keep living in your fantasy world.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:08 | Report abuse |
    • millie fink


      I think it works a little better when you unleash the fury AT THE END OF YOUR COMMENTS!!!!!

      November 26, 2010 at 11:11 | Report abuse |
  22. Name*kent

    I heard the WHO did a recent study that determined that 100% of people born will die. Eventually.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. Garry

    And you need to look at who produced the report, who paid for the report, and what was their political agenda for paying for the report. You can't just accept the reports anymore without know this information.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:48 | Report abuse | Reply
    • millie fink

      Why is "trying to save people's lives by cutting down their exposure to other people's cigarette poisons" considered aptly describable as a "political agenda"?

      November 26, 2010 at 10:51 | Report abuse |
    • kidkoala

      Millie, what are you talking about? Smoking is healthy for you and everyone around you. This is a giant conspiracy by oxygen companies to label smoking as unhealthy. The oxygen companies are losing money and this is another desperate ploy to get people to buy air and which will fill the pockets of doctors worldwide, where health is not their priority.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:02 | Report abuse |
    • millie fink



      November 26, 2010 at 11:04 | Report abuse |
  24. seely

    600,000 people is not 1% of the population. If 600,000 people die from secondhand smoke every year, that's 1 in 10,000 or .01%, based on a world population of 6 billion.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. Bob

    How many die from 2nd hand auto fumes!

    November 26, 2010 at 10:53 | Report abuse | Reply

      Agree ban driing in public places.

      November 26, 2010 at 12:59 | Report abuse |
  26. JoePelican

    And how many smokers are subject to second hand smoke and were part of the 600,000??? They never tell you that. How much second hand marijuana smoke has killed??? Better yet, how much first hand marijuana smoke killed??? There ya go. The good ol US GOV deciding what's best for you and what's not. They have their facts backwards, as usual.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:55 | Report abuse | Reply
    • kidkoala

      What does this article have to do with the US govt? The CIA are not out to get you, you can put down your rifle and open your blinds.

      November 26, 2010 at 10:57 | Report abuse |
  27. Dean

    I see from the comments here that smokers have no use or respect for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or WHO.

    November 26, 2010 at 10:57 | Report abuse | Reply
    • A Real Liberal

      Nope, Dean. No respect here for propaganda and self-righteous, intolerant BS. But to be fair, I simply don't have respect for health fascists, either.

      December 3, 2010 at 09:36 | Report abuse |
  28. isadore

    Millie fink
    I am aware of the smell of cig smoke. I dont like it.... even though I smoke! I only smoke a few in the am with my coffee, then shower, clean clothes, and I am off. Thats it. So, not all smokers stink. I hate the lingering smell of cigarettes on others and I don't want to smell like that. The thing is, I really like having a few smokes in the am with a strong cup of coffee! It's my thing...

    November 26, 2010 at 10:57 | Report abuse | Reply
    • millie fink

      Sorry dear, but you're swimming in a river called De Nile.

      Shower and toothbrush all you like; the tobacco oils and chemicals seep through your pores. Those of us with unimpaired olfactory parts pick up on it. Most are probably just too polite to tell you that.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:10 | Report abuse |
  29. amir

    I still dont understand what is the LOGIC and POINT behind smoking cigarettes?

    November 26, 2010 at 10:58 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mattmchugh

      Neuro-chemical addiction, more powerful than heroine.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:14 | Report abuse |
    • millie fink


      Nicotine induces an itch that only nicotine can scratch.

      Itches aren't about logic.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:48 | Report abuse |
  30. Malacki

    Phew, good thing I'm a FIRSThand smoker!

    November 26, 2010 at 11:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. Kamenl

    My wife smoles and does so outside...even with the door closed, I have to put my shirt up around my face to block out the stink coming from the wafting smoke fumes...it's horrible and so obviously not good for my lungs to breathe it in. It's common sense to know that second hand smoke is not good for humans or animals. The level of ignorance on display here is quite sad. Go on, continue to smoke those cigarrettes, and let your kids breathe in that delicious aroma.

    November 26, 2010 at 11:05 | Report abuse | Reply
    • millie fink

      What a sad-inducing scenario.

      I'll pray for your marriage–sounds like it could be on life-support...

      November 26, 2010 at 11:15 | Report abuse |
    • ggibson

      What a wuss.

      You cannot smell most of the poisons coming out of all the cars and trucks around you. Are you wearing an oxygen mask every time you are out driving?

      November 26, 2010 at 11:31 | Report abuse |
    • millie fink

      You cannot smell most of the poisons coming out of all the cars and trucks around you.

      Oh look!

      The March of the False Equivalences has started!


      November 26, 2010 at 11:36 | Report abuse |
    • Kamenl

      No, GGibson, I keep my windows closed.

      Thanks, Millie Fink...thankfully, aside from the smoking, other things are ok..

      November 26, 2010 at 12:39 | Report abuse |
  32. Mark

    Anything the governments around the world wish to vilify, all they have to do is put out a bogus study and then the fearful sheep of the world will back whatever they decide to do. For tobacco, its taxes. no nation has banned them, but they all tax them heavily. And no one that doesnt smoke cares just as long as they dont get hit. Perfect example here in WA was the candy tax. It hit almost everyone and the voters killed it. Yet we still have plenty of sin taxes that dont effect enough people, so they remain. The only real logic I can come up with is we need to be hit with a giant rock from space because our leaders are out of control, and our populous are a bunch of sheep.

    November 26, 2010 at 11:11 | Report abuse | Reply
    • You guys are all idiots

      POINT BLANK: Smoking is bad for everyone's health. I don't give a crap WHO you are. The world has gone straight down the toilet if people can actually defend smoking. Are you freaking kidding me? What next. Sympathy for child molesters? Murders? Wait. We do have that... its called 'pleading insanity'. Humans need to be eradicated from this Earth.

      November 26, 2010 at 17:35 | Report abuse |
  33. andy

    smoking, whether first or second-hand is hazardous to our health, please save the world.

    November 26, 2010 at 11:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. Inkt1

    Smoking is NOT A HABIT. When people use this term in relation to tobacco it boils my blood. Biting your nails is a habit. Smoking is a NICOTINE ADDICTION. Some argue that it is the most powerful drug addiction you can have, above even cocaine and heroin. I wouldn't know that as I have only been addicted to cigarettes. I cannot speak from experience on kicking the addiction of cocaine or heroin. As far as whether or not second hand smoke is really that harmful I can't really presume to know either way. Are we talking about three smokers chain smoking in a car, or standing outside and upwind from one smoker? I don't really care if it's harmful. It smells so bad and none of you smokers even know or will know until you quit. I apologized to my wife after I experienced the horrific stench of a smoker's breath after I quit. The best description is it smells like a pile of human excrement covered in vomit. No exaggeration. That's what you smell like. All of you. That's what I smelled like. It's disgusting and, if you ever do decide to quit you'll stop muttering under your nasty breath about people telling you how bad it is and you'll apologize to those close to you for forcing them to inhale your stench for so long.

    November 26, 2010 at 11:13 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Inkt1

      Apologies- I guess I left out the part where non-smokers don't understand exactly how amazingly difficult it is to quit smoking. It effects everyone differently but I'll tell you that, for me it caused constipation for DAYS and gave new definition to the term "skin crawling". I don't want it to sound like I'm judging smokers. I actually understand that some people just won't quit because it's that bleeping difficult.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:18 | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      That being said Ink, keep in mind that tobacco is still legal, and it is taxed at a high rate to deter it? Right. Its taxed at a high rate because tobacco users will pay it to get their fix, and non tobacco users dont care that users are being unfairly taxed. Our gov is using an addiction for income. These taxes are supposed to go to, by the very words of the legislation, programs that attempt prevention assistance in quitting and medical care. However, here in WA, 75% of these funds have been redistributed to the general fund because the Gov. cant balance the budget shortfall.

      November 26, 2010 at 13:25 | Report abuse |
  35. boocat

    If this is true, then I want names of people who have died from second hand smoke. Why is it that noone is ever named in these studies? I have never heard of anyone being diagnosed with cancer or emphysema and was told they contracted either disease due to second hand smoke. If smoking is such a killer, then why is it legal? It's all b.s.

    November 26, 2010 at 11:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. millie fink


    As I always say, smokers don't realize how they smell to non-smokers.

    Drug addictions trigger powerful denial mechanisms.

    November 26, 2010 at 11:17 | Report abuse | Reply
    • millie fink

      Oops–I was responding to the excellent comment by Inkt1.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:18 | Report abuse |
  37. Jake

    @this entire article – BS.

    November 26, 2010 at 11:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. Bob

    Just funny how everyone worries about smoking yet the worst cause of all YEA gasoline engines (cars) just keep right on being made to keep the oil companies fat and happy and the people just ignor it.

    November 26, 2010 at 11:20 | Report abuse | Reply
    • kidkoala

      One problem at a time, Bob!

      November 26, 2010 at 11:25 | Report abuse |
  39. larrywi

    Glad I gave it up, 32 yrs ago. Our kids Peditrician was the reason. He kept telling me about the harmful effects the smoke would have on my kids, I finally listened, Was easy for me to quit, my wife didn't smoke, so she was always telling about how the smoke would land on the furniture, the curtains, the clothes and our hair, and that the smell was disgusting, boy was she correct! Funny thing, we have 4 adult kids, not one ever smoked, thank God!!

    November 26, 2010 at 11:20 | Report abuse | Reply
    • ggibson

      My father and other realives smoked through my childhood and my sister and brother.... we are all adults now and nothing happened. I guess your doctor was BSing you. Unless your kid already had lung defects then you got fooled.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:42 | Report abuse |
    • millie fink

      Yeah larrywi, get a clue!

      I played Russian roulette once with my friends when I was a kid, and I didn't shoot myself.

      So what's the big deal with kids playing Russian roulette? If you don't die while playing it, why should you care if others do?

      November 26, 2010 at 11:51 | Report abuse |
  40. Tom

    It just goes to show you that the true fascism of the future will be health care imposed restraints. #1 reason to fear Obama care: it is one step closer to controlling people through health insurance: you can't smoke, you can't drink, you can't eat cheeseburgers, you can't drink soda pop, you can't ride a bike without armor, you can't you can't you can't. It's amazing how so many people here desire to control other people.

    November 26, 2010 at 11:21 | Report abuse | Reply
    • millie fink

      Gee Tom, paranoid much?

      You can do all those things, but you can also be prevented from imposing the harmful effects of some of your actions on others.

      You sound like a victim of the Right's efforts to control people with fear.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:25 | Report abuse |
  41. Oh Really

    182,000 die annually as a result of war. Only 182,000. It is better to kill someone directly than to smoke around them, apparently.
    CNN and the media at large has now decided to just print a lie than even scrutinize anything. This article is insulting to anyone that can think rationally.

    November 26, 2010 at 11:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. Damien

    we've banned smoking in restaurants, public and government buildings, airplanes, trains and buses, about the only place left to smoke is your home or your car, so don't invite anyone to your home or take anyone in your car, you'd hate to contribute to these stats

    November 26, 2010 at 11:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. chessnutz of Liverpool NY

    Another example of skewed metrics. You are counted a smoking death even if you live to be 110. This metric is also used in this study. No matter you age if you lived or worked around smoking you die from second hand smoke at 110 YRS of age.

    November 26, 2010 at 11:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. P.E.Rich

    Smokers suck.....then they die.

    November 26, 2010 at 11:28 | Report abuse | Reply
    • millie fink

      True enough. . . but they also blow.


      November 26, 2010 at 11:57 | Report abuse |
  45. Fricsaid

    I didn't have to read many comments to see that smokers will literally say anything to their defense. I used to be a smoker. Giving it up was one of my best decisions. This habit is terrible for anyone that's around it. I will not eat at a restaurant with a smoking section. I will not go anywhere that allows smoking in their business. I don't think smokers are bad, I just don't want you around me. Lol....smoking section in a restaurant. That's like having a peeing section in a pool. Smoke like freight trains as far as I care, just kindly stay away from me. Thank you. :o)

    November 26, 2010 at 11:29 | Report abuse | Reply
    • millie fink

      "This habit ADDICTION is terrible for anyone that's around it."

      Don't fall into the, er, habit of using THEIR terminology!

      November 26, 2010 at 11:32 | Report abuse |
    • Inkt1

      I say it all the time–SMOKING IS NOT A HABIT!!! IT IS A NICOTINE ADDICTION!!! Aside from that I whole-heartedly agree with the rest of your post!! My last cigarette was 10/15/08 and I can't stand to be around any smoker. My brother is still a pretty heavy smoker and he's always inviting me to his place to hang out. I love my brother and he's an AMAZING cook, but I can't enjoy anything there because the smoke literally chokes me.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:34 | Report abuse |
    • Fricsaid

      I stand rightfully corrected. It is an addiction. Like a big dummy, I smoked AND dipped Skoal tobacco. Now that Skoal. That was the one that kicked my butt for 20 years. 10x harder to quit that than smoking was. Seriously, thank the both of you for correcting me. 🙂

      November 26, 2010 at 13:10 | Report abuse |
    • Inkt1

      @Fricsaid- I've heard others say the same thing-that chew was more difficult to quit than smoking. I can't even imagine that. Congrats!!!

      November 26, 2010 at 15:29 | Report abuse |
  46. Mattmchugh

    Right. Here's my solution, for the U.S. anyway.

    Tobacco companies must fund life and health insurance programs for smokers and their families. A smoker (status determined by blood tests) can choose to buy for $50 a month a million-dollar 20-year term life insurance policy from Phillip Morris. Ditto, for $500 a month, a family health-insurance policy equivalent to a mid-level preferred provider plan with - and this is critical - an unlimited and non-cancelable terminal care clause. Basically, if you sell tobacco, you also must sell insurance.

    Make tobacco companies have a financial stake in the health problems they cause. Punishing them with lawsuit damages isn't the same thing as fundamentally changing their business model. That's what I want to see: social responsibility and financial culpability wrapped up in one big, ol' ironic package and laid at their doorstep... an abandoned baby they have to take care of.

    - mm

    November 26, 2010 at 11:34 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Inkt1

      WOW–I'm sorry but this makes so much sense it will never happen. But, MAN!! What an excellent proposal!!

      November 26, 2010 at 11:37 | Report abuse |
  47. karek40

    I have serious doubts about the accuracy of their numbers. I have lived around smokers most of my life and have known many many (certainly over 100) people, one (only one) heavy smoker died from lung cancer. I have never known a non-smoker to die of lung cancer.

    November 26, 2010 at 11:35 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Doug

      Most deaths caused by smoking are actually because smoking increases your risk of heart disease. Everyone talks about lung cancer because the effects on lung cancer are obvious (since lung cancer is absurdly rare in non-smokers). The effects on heart disease are harder to spot, because non-smokers often have heart attacks too, so when a smoker has a heart attack, it is hard to be certain whether smoking caused it. But, we know that smokers have heart attacks far more often (and earlier) than non-smokers.

      So, how many smokers have you known who died of heart disease? Some (although obviously not all) of those deaths were caused by smoking.

      November 26, 2010 at 12:00 | Report abuse |
  48. Jesse Spencer

    The snuff is one of the major indices of immortality now, I really still do not understand that feeling occurs, and I tried the cigar and it is not pleasant, and I see people smoking costante uncontrollably, I guess it must be an addiction, or should produce some kind of anxiety and I do not understand why they smoke far with such desperation, I looked online in Findrxonline who say that snuff has a component that produces anxiety and this is why people always made to be addictive consumption.

    November 26, 2010 at 11:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. Will

    Why don't you NON-SMOKERS that are bashing the smokers just admit that you're not as concerned about the health risks as much as the smell???

    November 26, 2010 at 11:36 | Report abuse | Reply
    • millie fink

      Well yeah, the smell is mighty bad, it's true, but the worst thing about it is that it's a REMINDER of the health risks.

      November 26, 2010 at 11:37 | Report abuse |
    • Inkt1

      I'm an EX-SMOKER and I believe that's EXACTLY what my post says... Smokers stink!!

      November 26, 2010 at 11:39 | Report abuse |
  50. Tom

    It sounds 100% true especially because the two things they cite to are so factually accurate. On the one hand there's the WHO website that cites to nothing other than another WHO article. And then there's the report in the Lancet, which is widely known for never making mistakes such as the "autism is caused by vaccines" article that they had to retract because they didn't exactly peer review it.

    Let's look at the method which the lancet article on second hand smoke uses "Methods
    The burden of disease from second-hand smoke was estimated as deaths and disability-adjusted life-years (DALYs) for children and adult non-smokers. The calculations were based on disease-specific relative risk estimates and area-specific estimates of the proportion of people exposed to second-hand smoke, by comparative risk assessment methods, with data from 192 countries during 2004."

    They estimate numbers, in other words they pull them out of their ass... that makes it true right?

    November 26, 2010 at 11:39 | Report abuse | Reply
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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.